Ilona Lelkes of Langley will have her wish granted on Friday to take photographs from a plane. She will be travelling from Abbotsford to Vancouver. (Submitted photo)

Great-grandma’s wish granted to take photos from new heights

Ilona Lelkes of Langley will fly on Cessna 172 Cessna from Abbotsford

A great-grandmother and avid photographer from Langley is getting to live her dream on March 4, starting in Abbotsford.

Ilona Lelkes, 81, will shoot photos from the sky aboard a Cessna 172 flight from Abbotsford International Airport to Vancouver. She will be under the tutelage of Smart City Media aerial photographer Cormac Clinton.

The wish for Lelkes, a resident of Chartwell Renaissance Retirement Residence in Langley, is made possible by Chartwell and its charity partner, Wish of a Lifetime Canada (WOLC).

Lelkes said she was surprised to find out that her wish was being granted.

“I was on my computer and the whole staff came up behind me with balloons and surprised me with my wish. I bawled,” she said.

Lelkes is a great-grandmother of seven and a volunteer photographer for Vancouver’s Hungarian Cultural Society. She also documents residents and events at Chartwell Renaissance.

Lelkes arrived in Canada six decades ago as a refugee fleeing revolution in Hungary.

Determined to capture and commemorate her new home in all its glory, she picked up her camera, and a lifelong passion was born.

Her subjects and skills grew one click at a time to include botany, landscapes, travel vistas and portraits. Many of her images are posted to her public Facebook page. “When I work on my pictures I don’t see or hear anything else except that photograph,” Lelkes says.

Since 2015, Chartwell and WOLC have fulfilled more than 130 wishes for Canadian seniors.

WOLC says its wish-granting helps to “combat senior isolation and shift the way society views and values our oldest generations by sharing stories to inspire those of all ages.”

RELATED: Chilliwack senior’s wish comes true above Cheam

RELATED: Nature comes through in time for Lower Mainland seniors home butterfly release

Seniors

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Aldergrove Kodiaks veteran players new recruits of collegiate teams

Kodiaks C.J. Corazzin, Ty Pickering, and Tyler Cannon will move onto college, Junior A hockey

VIDEO: Painting hearts to raise spirits in Langley City

‘Community Strong’ initiative by Downtown Langley Business Association

PHOTOS: Aldergrove portrait series captures families ‘new normal’ of isolation at home

Photographer and essential worker, Shaylin Thulin, is celebrating her community during a pandemic

LAPS annual Furry Tails race goes virtual this April

Fundraising for lost and abandoned animals at Aldergrove shelter can be done from home

Parliamentary Secretary for Gender Equity assures support for those suffering from domestic abuse

VictimLinkBC can be contacted at 1-800-563-0808 or by email at VictimLinkBC@bc211.ca

UPDATE: Canadians awake to extra COVID-19 emergency benefit money, feds clarify changes

The CRA and federal officials are working to clarify the confusion around payments

B.C. sorting medical equipment sales, donation offers for COVID-19

Supply hub has call out for masks, gowns, coronavirus swabs

B.C. records five more deaths due to COVID-19, 45 new cases

A total of 838 people have recovered from the virus

Major crimes investigating sudden death of North Okanagan child

The 8 year old was flown to Kelowna General Hospital and died hours later

BC institution has highest number of positive results for COVID-19

11 inmates in Mission test positive for coronavirus, more than any other federal prison in Canada

Easter Bunny added to B.C.’s list of essential workers

Premier John Horgan authorizes bunny to spread “eggs-ellent cheer” throughout province

Travellers returning to B.C. must have self-isolation plan or face quarantine: Horgan

Premier John Horgan says forms must be filled out by travellers

More than 400 animals have been adopted amid pandemic: B.C. SPCA

People are taking this time of social distancing to find a loyal companion through the animal welfare group

Most Read